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Ladies on the Loose! For the first time ever, a motorcycle travel DVD made for women, by women! These intrepid women share their tips to help you plan your own motorcycle adventure. They also answer the women-only questions, and entertain you with amazing tales from the road! Presented by Lois Pryce, veteran solo traveller through South America and Africa and author of 'Lois on the Loose', and 'Red Tape and White Knuckles.'
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The DR clutch is straight forward to change - I didn't have any dramas doing mine in a Russian car park. You don't need any special tools beyond what you are probably already carrying.
It's cheaper to get a non-suzuki clutch, such as this one: Catalog. The hardest part for me was scraping off the old gasket - I recommend trying to keep it intact and reusing it (but have a new gasket or gasket glue as a plan B).
There is a good chance that the clutch plates will be fine, but you need to decide if you can afford to change the clutch, and then wait for new plates to be shipped in if the old ones are buggered.
Well, you don't need to change the steel plates UNLESS the clutch has been seriously cooked. Then, the steel plates can warp and the clutch won't release properly. When you get the clutch apart, put the plates on a proper flat surface and see if there is any wobble.
The clutch can be changed without draining the oil. Just lay the bike down on some sacks or a pack or something to protect the paintwork, clutch side up. As someone said, try to save the cover gasket. Loosen the clutch cover and try to see which side of the join the gasket most wants to stick to. Then get a very thin bladed flexible knife (I use a fish filleting knife) to try to persuade the gasket to remain where it wants to. Take time and be patient. If you need to use a new gasket, a thin smear of grease on both mating surfaces acts as both a good extra sealant AND lets you reuse the gasket next time.
Having changedf the friction plates and springs and reasebled the bike I took it for a test run adn found the power had returned.
However when stopping I found that the bike now creeps forward even with the clutch lever fully in and I'm also having difficulty engagingneutral. keeping the bike in first with the lever fully in the bike then cuts out??
I've heard a number a problems can be associated with this such as warped metal plates, grooves in the basket.
I've had to use 20w50 mineral oil also, could this be the problem? I usaully use 10w40.
any suggestions would be much appreciated, before I changed the plates I encountered none of these problems????
The dr350 has a few known problems with a dragging clutch, and there is a fix involving removing a little material from the back of the clutch basket to stop it rubbing presumably on the bearing race behind it. Bent or worn washers are apparently another cause of the same symptoms. Maybe the 650 suffers the same way?
I've seen grooves in the clutch baskets of older bikes I've owned, but I've never been convinced that it's caused noticable drag (as in I've filed them away without the clutch drag I was trying to fix going away). The correct way to check your steel plates for flatness would be on a pane of glass. It doesn't seem very common for them to warp though (I don't know anyone personally who has ever had to replace them on any bike).
The dr350 has a few known problems with a dragging clutch, ......Bent or worn washers are apparently another cause of the same symptoms. Maybe the 650 suffers the same way?
True that. My DR350 clutch dragging was fixed by replacing the two fat thrust washers either side of the clutch basket. The groove worn into each was very obvious. But I can't say the same definitely applies to the DR650.
I've seen grooves in the clutch baskets of older bikes I've owned, but I've never been convinced that it's caused noticable drag (as in I've filed them away without the clutch drag I was trying to fix going away).
Good for you. Since this is about the DR650: I have filed my clutch basket and it made a significant improvement. Dto. on my CX500.
after changing the plates and springs, re-adjusting the cable etc the bike was back in working order however i have these new problems;
1. bike will only engage in neutral with the bike rolling or once the engine has been switched off.
2. bike creeps forward when stopping at lights etc
3. just occurred, the engine makes a disturbing clacking sound now and again like the gears are disengaging usually when given throttle climbing hills. this happens more when the engine is cold than hot. (i adjusted the clutch cable and tightened the drive chain and this briefly solved the problem for a few days but it has since returned? could it be due to 20w50 mineral car oil causing the clutch to slip???)
Points 1 & 2 are because the clutch is not disengaging completely.
The reasons can include:
Too much freeplay in the cable. At the lever you should have about 3mm of cable movement before you feel some firmness. Try adjusting out all the cable freeplay to test. If you leave it like this then you run the risk of the clutch slipping but it's a good way to test.
Cable not routed correctly, so there is sharp bends (pull the clutch in and turn full lock to lock. The tension on the lever should remain the same) or the outer has been crushed at full lock by the steering stops.
Worn clutch basket. Use a file to dress up the grooves in the fingers of the clutch basket. You will have to pull the clutch out to do this.
Warped metal plates. Take them out and press down of a known flat surface eg. plate glass. If there is any wobble, you need new ones.
Incorrect assembly! This is a difficult one because it's hard to know what is the correct assembly, once you have got it wrong. My suggestion is to study the clutch carefully as you take it apart and try and see if anything looks out of place. Always take lots of pictures with a digital camera on dissasembly!
Incorrect parts fitted. Are they OEM Suzuki plates that you fitted? I'm a firm believer is using after-market parts, but only from brands I know.
The clacking sound is very odd. The only way I can see it coming from the clutch is if you took the entire clutch basket off when you changed the plates (and you don't need to do that to get to the plates), and then put something behind the basket to the point where it is no longer engaging properly with the driving gear on the crank. I can't see how you could do this so it's pretty unlikely.
I think it's something else, and the chain/sprocket set is what comes to mind first. Forgive me if I'm treating you like a mechanical idiot, but do you know what the chain and sprocket service limits are? It may be that one or both sprockets are worn out enough to let the chain slip over the teeth. If this is the case then the chain will be shagged too. Tightening the chain will stop slipping happening, until the chain stretches a bit more. The teeth of both sprockets should be evenly shaped and not hooked one way or even missing! Pulling the chain away from the back sprocket shouldn't let more than half the teeth show under the chain.
It really can't be an oil issue. If the clutch slips, it's a silent event.
Hope this helps and keep the questions coming. We ARE here to help.
cheers for the feedback. i think its likely the chain/sprocket is on its way out.
i'm certain i re-assembled the clutch correctly, like you said lots of digi photos and really organised...didn't touch the basket. The chain is the original one when i bought the bike because the new replacement that i stuck on before the trip snapped and buckled after about 8000km cheap import stuff.
I guess i'll just keep tightening the chain for now and see what happens!
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